How To Stop Living Beyond Your Means In 10 Easy Steps

With so many demands on your time and income it can be hard not to be living beyond your means.

Your time is stretched so you end up spending more money to gain more time.

Your money is stretched because you’re trying to be all things to all people including yourself.

It’s so easy to live beyond your means when you’ve got access to credit cards, loans and everything else that our digital world offers us.

When you look around you see so many others spending high, enjoying themselves so why not you?

Actually, it’s OK to spend high if that is your choice as long as you can afford it and know the price you are paying.

If you earn high, you can spend high. When you earn less you need to spend less otherwise debt comes a-knocking.

Living beyond your means quote: “Rich people stay rich by living like their broke. Broke people stay broke by living like their rich.” unknown

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7 Warning Signs You’re Living Beyond Your Means

Most people who have had debt have lived beyond their means at some point.

I certainly have and I know it doesn’t take much to spend too much and be wasting money.

A few extra treats here and there, some nice new clothes on a more regular basis and bam, you’ve got debt and a lifestyle you can’t afford.

So what are the warnings signs of an overspending life?

1.You worry how others perceive your spending – you worry that others will judge you for your spending choices so you continue to say yes to evenings out even though you’ve run out of money.

2. You have no emergency fund – for, well, emergencies. If an unexpected bill or emergency happens your only recourse is to put it on a credit card or dive deeper into your overdraft.

You need to read this post: Emergency Fund Examples: 23 (Unexpected) Reasons Why You Need One

3. You can’t pay off your credit card in full every month – there’s nothing wrong with using your credit card for everyday spending as long as you pay it off in full every month. When you can’t do that you have a problem.

4. You’ve got overdue bills – you’re at the point of robbing peter to pay paul, having to choose which bills are going to be paid and delaying the payment of others because you haven’t got the money.

5. You’re paying overdraft fees – when you get paid you’re back in the black but within a few days you’ve dipped into your overdraft and there you stay until next payday.

6. You don’t have retirement savings – you’re too busy paying for today to think about or plan for your retirement which may be many years away.

7. You put your holiday on your credit card – you haven’t saved up for that longed for holiday so it’s whacked onto the credit card and you promise yourself you’ll do better next time.

Read these posts:

How To Save For Your Dream Vacation This Year

Vacation Savings Plan, What, When And How To Save

Living beyond your means quote: “Every time you borrow money you’re robbing your future self.” Nathan W Morrisein

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How Do You Live Under Your Means?

Living under your means is truly very simple. You must not spend all that you earn.

Period.

In truth though it can be more complex, especially if you have got used to living beyond your means.

It can involve changing how you live your life.

This can be a positive as you learn to love doing things that don’t involve you having to earn more money or go into debt.

Making the change to living on less is best done with a positive mindset.

You are doing so because you want to, not because you have to.

If you make changes but feel deprived then the changes won’t last.

However if you can learn to love living within your means you can make permanent changes to improve your finances and lifestyle.

If look at what rich people do, they don’t overspend, they don’t have huge debt.

They have financial goals that they are constantly working toward.

I love living frugally and wouldn’t want to start blowing every penny I earn. Living within my means has given me:

Let’s be honest you know you are living beyond your means because money isn’t sitting right with you.

You might have a niggle at the back of your mind, or your overspending is staring at you. Every. Single. Day.

Whatever has caused your lightbulb moment the truth is you can stop living paycheck to paycheck and fix your overspending.

Living within your means quote: “If there is any one thing that will bring peace and contentment into the human heart and into the family, it is to live within your means.” Heber J Grant

How To Stop Living Outside Your Means

Now you have had your light bulb moment and know you need to start living on a realistic budget you need tips on how to achieve living on just your income.

Follow these 10 tips and you will successful change your lifestyle and start saving money on a regular basis.

Living beyond your means quote: “Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you do not have. Remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.” Epicurus

1. Make A Commitment To Yourself To Start Living On Less

Make a commitment to yourself to start living within your means. The overspending has to stop and you need to adjust your lifestyle to accommodate your reduced spending. But you can still enjoy life living below your means, it's a different way of life not a bad way of life.

2. Learn How To Budget And Save Money

Create a spending budget that you can commit to. Saving money is an important part of budgeting as it stops you from living above your means and get's you in the right mindset to save money.

3. Reduce Your Monthly Expenses

You can't keep spending as you were so changes need to be made. Make those changes according to your priorities. Priority number one is of course spending less so you will have to get frugal in some shape or form

4. Give Yourself Wriggle Room

Fun Money! This is your guilt free pot of money to spend as you will. If you are used to spending too much and treating yourself regularly you will fail if you don't budget for some money to continue in this vein. Doesn't have to be a lot but it will help you keep your budget on track.

5. Use The Cash Envelope System

Using cash helps you get your spending under control. Using envelopes and only spending cash really helps you reconnect with your money. It's too easy to swipe your card and not register your spending. Much harder to physically hand over cash.

6. Prepare For Emergencies With A Rainy Day Fund

Everyone needs money set aside to pay for the unexpected bills. Your rainy day fund is not to be used when your run out of grocery money. It should be ring fenced for genuine emergencies and unexpected bills such as car repairs.

7. Create A Debt Plan Using The Right Repayment Method For You

The Snowball Method and the Avalanche Method have both been proven to work in debt repayment. Use the method that works best for you as both have their own advantages. The main thing is create that debt plan and start paying it off.

8. Earn Extra Money

Earning extra money perhaps with a hobby you enjoy is a great way to help you acclimatise to your new way of living. Working extra hours means you have less hours to think about spending money and you are earning extra cash to help you balance your books.

9. Learn The Traditional Frugal Living Skills Of Your Grandparents

Our Grandparents generation developed skills that helped them live frugally, because they had to. Doing things for yourself instead of paying someone to do them for you is a good way to get your expenses down and you learn new skills. How about a spot of DIY or making your own bread?

How To Stop Living Beyond Your Means Right Now

If you’ve got a car on finance that is crippling you or you worry what life is going to throw at you today then now is the time to make the lifestyle change and learn how to start living on a budget.

Follow all the steps above and you will see a difference within a month.

Keep following the steps, refine your budget and how you do things and before you know it you’ll love living with less and the freedom being debt free brings.

Live within your means quote: “Live within your means. Owe Nothing. Friendship and love are free.” unknown

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